Hydrate IV Bar • COLORADO
Meet Katie Wafer, founder of Hydrate IV Bar and a fifth generation Denver native. Katie only left Denver for a short time to pursue a degree in business and communications at Arizona State University. Combining her education and her lifelong passion for fitness, health and wellness, Katie moved to Las Vegas, then back to Denver to work in medical sales. Katie also continued her love of dancing as a Denver Broncos Cheerleader.
Planting the Seeds
During Katie’s time as a Broncos Cheerleader, she saw players using IV’s as a way to help with recovery, modality and endurance. While working in medical sales in Las Vegas, she also saw a rise in the use of IV’s for hangovers.
When Katie returned to Denver, her eyes were truly opened to the benefits of IV therapy. A friend of Katie’s was diagnosed with Lyme Disease and she witnessed firsthand the benefits of infusions. Katie began to see that her medical and business background made her uniquely prepared to start the Hydrate IV Bar.
What is Hydrate IV?
“Hydrate IV Bar is a medical spa that promotes wellness from within. We specialize in IV nutrient therapy and vitamin injections,” Katie describes. The treatments allow 100% of the nutrients to go into the client’s bloodstream, a “much more effective way to bring your tank back to full.”
Many Hydrate IV Bar clients seek therapies preventatively. Boosting their immune systems helps with athletic performance and more. There is also a recovery aspect, including people who come in with symptoms of dehydration. Hydrate IV Bar administers saline and water soluble vitamins such as: vitamin c, zinc, b-complex, b-12, calcium, magnesium, glutathione. All clients of Hydrate IV Bar consult with a medical director who has over 30 years of experience with IV therapy. Services are administered by registered nurses.
Education is the number biggest challenge to IV therapy. While these services have been offered for many years, they typically are not available in the concierge, spa setting. The growth of the concierge setting for these services expanded several years ago in Las Vegas as a response to the need for hangover hydration.
One of the biggest differences between Hydrate IV bar and similar services is the atmosphere. Hydrate IV Bar uses an open floor plan, allowing it to become a social setting. Comfortable seating, blankets and beverages are included.
Coming to Fruition
The first Hydrate IV Bar launched in April of 2016, in the Bonnie Brae neighborhood of Denver. Since then Katie and her crew have expanded the business into several new locations. Katie has relied on referrals to spread awareness for the brand. The first location also benefited from free PR opportunities knocking on her door. News stations, magazines and others jumped at the chance to report on this unique experience.
In June of 2017, the second Hydrate IV Bar was opened in the Highlands neighborhood of Denver. The third and fourth locations were launched in Cherry Creek North and Boulder in 2019.
Katie believes IV treatments will become more culturally accepted over time, particularly when they see that Hydrate IV Bar is conservative with client treatments. This means using licensed doctors and nurses to ensure patients are cared for before, during and after treatment.
A key component of the growth of IV services has been the expansion in the wellness industry. More and more people are spending money on gym memberships and spa treatments. Medical practitioners are able to provide services that frequently cost less than a medical office visit.
Memberships and More
A standard membership at Hydrate IV Bar includes one treatment per month. While most clients comes in once per month, clients with autoimmune diseases, such as Lyme Disease and chronic fatigue, benefit from more frequent treatments.
Services vary from $100-$169 per visit depending on the type of treatment. A one-time visit is charged at a higher rate, which is why memberships are recommended. Members pay $125/month and receive one IV and one b-12 injection. Additional treatments come with a 30% discount. Appointments are blocked for one hour including the consultation and paperwork. The IV itself takes approximately 30 minutes.
Katie’s hope is to continue opening IV Bars in new markets. Soon a fifth location will be opening in Denver at a new facility called Nurture. Nurture is a warehouse housing all things health, wellness, fitness and beauty under one big roof.
As a business owner, Katie has accomplished huge professional growth. Her continued success has brought sacrifices, including no longer having personal relationship with each client who walks through the door. “It was a weird shift for me,” she says.
Katie talks about how lucky she feels to be surrounded by such incredible, supportive people. While the face of the brand is largely centered around Katie, each member of her family has had a role in helping make this business a reality.